This is a section from Thursdayâs Daily Politics, which is an exchange between Jack Straw MP, John Mann MP, BBC Presenter Jo Coburn, and Nick Herbert MP (Conservative, Arundel), about the recent âresearchâ suggesting that MPs think they deserve a much larger salary.
Jack Straw launches a series of (mainly untrue) diversionary attacks on journalists, claiming that most criticising MPs earn more than MPs, while actually the critique comes mainly from the public.
Spring-Heeled Jack suggests that Â£65,726, which on itâs own puts your basic MP in roughly the top 5% of the population by income, plus generous expenses for their London pads, plus a food allowance, plus extra money for committee responsibilities etc, plus a gold-plated pension, plus all the rest, was not enough for the poor things.
From 2â45â³ John Mann explains why this is essentially exactly the same tissue of bollocks (apologies to Anna â no other word would suffice here) that it was last time.
But John Mann also said something else even more interesting in an exchange later on, which I havenât seen anyone pick up on yet. This is verbatim, from 8â00â³.
Jo Coburn: Should a General Secretary of a Union be paid a Six Figure Salary.
John Mann MP: If it was my Union Iâd get it reduced.
Jo Coburn: Thank-you. Thank-you very much, John Mann. Got a clear answer there !
Brillo: I think his Unionâs General Secretary is a worried man.
A quick check of the Unite return on the Certification Officerâs website reveals that the General Secretary Len McCluskey received in his package, in 2011:
Gross Salary â Â£101,385
Pension Contributions â Â£14,782
Car Benefit â Â£6,247
Total Package Value â Â£122,434
We should acknowledge that that is quite significantly less than the eyewatering Â£186,626 received by Derek Simpson in 2009-10.
Thatâs a John Mann quote to remember for 2015.
(26/1/2012: Article updated to exclude NI Contributions from Len McCluskeyâs reward package.)